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Separating at the seams

Separating at the seams

Old 02-17-2017, 07:46 AM
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Default Separating at the seams

Hi everyone,

I'm fairly new to the quilting scene. I've made a few queen sized quilts for friends/family and after a little use and a wash or two they all seem to be getting tiny separations at some of the seams. I always make sure to pre-shrink my fabric before starting to sew and try to be as careful as possible with the seam allowance (usually I do 1/4 inch).

Does anyone have any other tips for avoiding these separations? Or is it just natural wear and tear?

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Old 02-17-2017, 08:24 AM
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Stitch length- 2 or 1.8, be consistent with that 1/4" seam allowance. I personally think that if the quilting is too sparse, it causes stress on those 1/4" seams, so as I was instructed, a long time ago, no more than a fist of open space between quilting lines.....Recommend washing on gentle cycle and also delicate dry.....how often are these quilts washed? Just my personal thoughts on this subject.
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Old 02-17-2017, 08:39 AM
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Do you check the seams after you sew the blocks? I make sure to check them all to make sure nothing slipped. Every once in a while part of a seam will be less than 1/8 and I will rip and resew.

How did you quilt it? STID is a good way to secure the seams and while it is a bit tedious, it does help with opening seams.
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Old 02-17-2017, 08:57 AM
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What stitch length are you using? You may need to shorten it. Also, this can happen if it has not been quilted closely enough. Although some battings say you can quilt up to 10 inches apart, quilting closer will yield a sturdier quilt. Also, the quilting distance should be measured in all directions, including the diagonal. Finally many folks wash the completed quilt before gifting. Better that a seam pops & you can fix it before gifting.
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Old 02-17-2017, 09:01 AM
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yes, that underneath fabric can move and not give you a full 1/4 seam allowance on both pieces you sewed. always check that. cotton fabric is what you are using? also maybe more quilting on the finished product too. even if it is just next to the seams.
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Old 02-17-2017, 09:14 AM
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tighten your stitch length
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Old 02-17-2017, 09:57 AM
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Probably the biggest thing.....choose a fabric with a firmer weave. It holds up much better. Loosely woven fabrics shred.
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Old 02-17-2017, 10:13 AM
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If I end up with a seam allowance that is too small, I stitch a second (and some times third if the seam allowance is really worrisome) line of stitching along the seam allowance right next to but not on top of the original seam in a very tight stitch length. I find that if I try to rip a seam out that is too narrow, the the fabric in the seam can unravel and I end up with less fabric than what I started out with, and that amplifies the problem.

I wash all my quilts after finishing them in the harshest conditions I think it may encounter. If it's going to be used by a child, I use the hottest water and dryer temperatures. I look for loose seams or whatever problem that might show up so I can fix them. As I have become a better quilter over the years, I'm more confident that my quilts will survive harsh treatment in the hands of others.
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Old 02-17-2017, 10:17 AM
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Shorten your stitch length. As long as your stitch length is shorter, good quality fabric is used & your seams are consistently 1/4" there should be no seam problems. My grandkids have quilts they have had since they were babies that have been washed at least twice a month & no seams have come apart. The quilting on most of them is 6" apart.
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Old 02-17-2017, 10:30 AM
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Be sure to quilt the recommended distance as indicated on the batt pakaging. If there is not enough quilting, the fabric moves too much in the wash and that an put undue stress on the seams.
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